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Lemon Asparagus Spring Pasta

Course Pasta
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 minutes
Total Time 12 minutes
Servings 4 servings


  • 1 pound fresh asparagus
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 4 ounces bacon or pancetta
  • 14 ounces fresh fettuccine
  • 3 tbsp olive oil or butter
  • Juice and zest of 1 lemon about 4 tbsp
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese


  • Snap or chop off the bottom inch or so of the asparagus. Cut the rest of the stalks of asparagus into 2-3-inch pieces. Mince the garlic finely or send through your garlic press.
  • Cook the bacon or pancetta in a large sauce pan over medium heat. When it’s done (careful to not let it burn!), remove with a slotted spoon and let strain on a paper towel line plate. Remove the grease from the pan, leaving just a couple teaspoons to cook the garlic.
  • In the same sauce pan, reduce the heat to low and add the asparagus. Sautee for 5 minutes, until almost tender. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 3-4 minutes, being careful not to burn the garlic.
  • Add the pasta to the boiling water and cook according to instructions. If using fresh pasta, it should only take 2-3 minutes for al dente.
  • When the pasta is ready, reserve 1 cup of the pasta water to use for the sauce, then drain the rest. Add the pasta to the large sauce pan. Add in the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper, stirring or tossing to combine. Finally, add in ½ cup of the pasta water, stirring until a nice light sauce forms. If the pasta looks dry, add a few more splashes of the pasta water.
  • Finally, toss in the pancetta or bacon, asparagus, lemon zest and cheese to finish! Sprinkle with more parmesan to serve.